Taurine-Modified Boehmite Nanoparticles for GFRP Wind Turbine Rotor Blade Fatigue Life Enhancement

Materials (Basel). 2021 Nov 18;14(22):6997. doi: 10.3390/ma14226997.


Advanced nanoparticle-reinforced glass fibre composites represent a promising approach to improving the service life of fatigue-loaded structures such as wind turbine rotor blades. However, processing particle-reinforced resins using advanced infusion techniques is problematic due to, for example, higher viscosity as well as filtering effects. In this work, the effects of boehmite nanoparticles on viscosity, static properties and fatigue life are investigated experimentally. Whereas rheological analysis reveals a significant increase of viscosity in the case of pristine boehmite particles, an additional taurine surface modification of the particles can effectively reduce viscosity increase. As regards mechanical properties, significant improvements of both static as well as fatigue properties are found. The addition of 15 wt.% of boehmite particles increases fatigue life by a maximum of 270% compared to the unmodified fibre-reinforced epoxy. Transmitted light-based investigation of the damage mechanisms shows delayed initiation and smaller growth rates for laminates containing boehmite particles. At the same time, the observed mechanisms and their accumulation along the relative cycle number do not change significantly. In addition, by characterising autonomous heating, the so-called Risitano fatigue limit is determined. The results reveal that with increasing particle content there is an increase in the fatigue limit.

Keywords: boehmite; fatigue life enhancement; glass fibre-reinforced composites; nanoparticles wind turbine; rotor blade; taurine.